Scroll through your Facebook news feed today and take note of how many of the posts contain video content. For me, Facebook video dominates, and most of them autoplay as I scroll down. From live news reports to funny bloopers, inspirational moments and informational how-to pieces, this content is on the move, up to the minute and, perhaps most importantly, easy to absorb.
As marketers, we know that video is one of the best ways to engage an audience, and there’s certainly an audience to be found on Facebook. According to Statista, there were 1.33 billion active daily users on Facebook in the 2nd quarter of 2017, and Facebook claims more than 4 billion video views every single day.
Facebook Live videos in particular can help you build a personal relationship with customers. Everyone loves getting in on the action first, and live videos cater to this desire, offering an exclusive look at your offering that’s only available right now, to those who are online at that exact time.
Are you taking advantage of the attention-getting benefits of Facebook video? If you are just getting started, here are some best practices to incorporate in your Facebook video strategy:
Facebook Video Best Practices
- Upload your videos directly to Facebook, so that they will play automatically as users scroll over them. Don’t worry about your audio disrupting and annoying them, it doesn’t play unless they tap or click it.
- Start strong – because your video begins silently, those first few frames must be interesting enough to catch people’s attention so that they turn on the audio.
- Provide context – publish a key bit of the audio as the text component so that the purpose of your video is crystal clear. Don’t try to trick people into watching and listening, it will only anger them if you promise something and then don’t deliver.
- Exclusivity is attractive. Video content that offers something your audience can’t get elsewhere is very appealing.
Track your Facebook video metrics by checking your Page Insights, where you can see how many views and unique views your video gets, average duration and audience retention stats. This data is valuable to inform your video strategy going forward.
If you need help with Facebook video, drop us a line.
We’ve been predicting for some time now that, as advertisers continue to pile into digital, the money spent in digital ads will surpass other media. In 2017, we have reached a tipping point where digital ad spends, comprising both desktop/laptop and mobile devices, is beginning to overtake TV advertising.
According to recent research by Statista, an online statistics portal, digital ad spend in the US has already surpassed TV, and is only expected to keep growing. Here is a graphic that shows online ad spend in 2015 and projects where they expect it to go in the next five years.
What does this mean for your business? Well, if you aren’t allocating some of your advertising budget to digital already, it might be time to do so. Digital advertising targets your audience so much more efficiently than traditional marketing channels and provides unprecedented data metrics to give further insights into their behaviour, helping you understand who they are, how and when to connect with them.
Beyond Digital Ad Spend
Investing in digital ads is only one part of a comprehensive digital marketing strategy. There are several complementary online marketing methods including content marketing, social media marketing and SEO that will help you increase your reach, improve engagement and boost sales. An effective marketing plan will incorporate all of these in a coordinated effort.
How well does your marketing strategy function? Are you allocating wisely to digital or do you suspect that you are falling behind your competitors. Let us help you get up to speed, drop us a line and we’ll talk about it.
Brand safety, as a marketing term, has been around for quite a while, but recently has been waved about as a yellow flag in the digital advertising race. It has to do with the appearance of digital ads next to objectionable content, and the supposition that consumers will associate your brand with the seal clubbing video they just watched and hold you to account for it.
Whether you are a small business owner just dipping a toe into the Google Display Network or YouTube advertising or a big brand with a network of multichannel ad campaigns, you would probably be horrified to find your ad next to an ISIS recruitment video.
When I began doing some reading on this, I found a bunch of experts gasping about how damaging these ad placements could be and demanding that Google, YouTube, Facebook et al tighten up their bolts. Many brands have pulled their ads rather than risk their brands’ safety.
It’s all very alarming! As a digital marketer, how can I keep my clients safe from spurious associations that could do damage to their business?
Then I read this article.
It’s always good to take a step back and look at things from a different perspective, and author Andy Ball does so in an insightful and amusing way. He points out that if the person who just watched or read some horrific stuff online also sees your ad, will they construe it as your support for the nasty material? If they do, will it bother them? After all, they might even be in favour of seal clubbing, or ISIS.
The worst consequence of your ad appearing with unsavoury content may be that you are unwittingly supporting, with your ad budget, those whom you would never consider supporting.
I do believe that Google and other advertising merchants need to address this issue, and pressure from brands and agencies, as well as loss of advertising revenue, will force them to do so.
In the meantime, if you’re concerned about it, maybe focus your digital strategy on your owned content, where you have more control.
These days, everyone’s a critic. Drag one obstinate customer down the aisle and before you know it, you’re the target of a smear campaign!
I’m just kidding. United Airlines deserves the bad press for this one, and so far, it doesn’t seem like they’re managing the crisis very well. The official response appears to blame the customer, who was sitting in the seat he had paid for and didn’t want to give up. Following closely on the heels of another United Airlines PR blunder (the ‘leggings incident’) this one is doing serious damage to their reputation. ‘Fly the Friendly Skies’ indeed!
The practice of overbooking flights and the fact that they were acting within their contract notwithstanding, this kind of behaviour won’t be tolerated by a populace armed with technology and unafraid to use it. Several shocking videos immediately popped up online and a multitude of voices (now including mine) is raised in defense of the battered customer.
This is a perfect example of how not to manage your reputation and should be a warning for all businesses. Respond to your unhappy customers quickly and with tact. If someone complains about your product or the service you provided and you respond poorly, slowly or not at all, the repercussions could be costly.
3 Reputation Management Rules
To support your reputation, always respond to customer complaints with:
- Speed – if your official response has to filter through several departments and be edited by a group, it’s likely to take time. Meanwhile, your reputation is being dragged through the mud. Don’t let the outrage boil over, at the very least, respond to say that you are investigating the complaint.
- Tact – Whomever creates your official response must be tactful and capable of viewing the situation from the customer’s perspective. While you might feel angry or defensive, it’s not helpful to lash out, even if you think the customer is in the wrong.
- Fairness – Own up to your culpability and offer a solution if you are in the wrong. If you know that you haven’t caused the customer’s problem, or if there has been some sort of misunderstanding, explain very clearly what happened, on the channel(s) used by your customer to publicize their complaint. For example, if someone posts a negative review to your Google+ business listing and he or she wasn’t even your customer, it’s ok to say so, in a calm and measured tone.
After responding to your critical review or PR fiasco, closely monitor any mention of your business online to ensure that your reputation, like the poor United Airlines passenger, doesn’t take a further battering.
Need help with online reputation management? Call WSI Digital Marketing.
Influencer marketing has been around since the late 1800s when brands began using celebrities in their ads. It has continued to evolve, with highly lucrative celebrity endorsements becoming the norm for big brands around the 1980s.
With the rise of the internet and new online marketing opportunities, influencer marketing has progressed and changed. While costly celebrity endorsements are still leveraged profitably by big business, there are possibilities for small business to include influencer marketing in their digital marketing strategy that can fit nicely into a much smaller budget.
How can Your Small Business Benefit from Influencer Marketing?
Wherever your audience is hanging out online, there are influencers they watch, read, or listen to. By spending some time on the social channels frequented by your audience, you can identify influencers who:
- Have a decent number of followers
- Have some connection to your industry or are likely to use your products/services, and
- Aren’t Kardashians (so more likely to work within your budget)
Initiate a relationship by interacting with potential influencers online – like their posts, repost, comment or subscribe to establish your interest in them.
When you have found an influencer who you think might be a good fit, reach out to them on the social channels you want to use in your campaign (to gauge their responsiveness) and ask if they would be interested in partnering with you. During negotiations, be very clear about what you expect from them.
Do you think a paid post on their blog will work best for your business, a single or series of Youtube videos, maybe a few Instagram or Pinterest endorsements? Wherever you determine to utilise influencer marketing, it’s important to understand the issues around disclosure. Governing bodies across North America and worldwide are beginning to enact and enforce laws that ensure consumers know whenever influencers are paid, in cash or in kind, for their reviews and endorsements. Fines for non-compliance can be hefty, so don’t take any risks.
Influencers don’t need to be famous, they just need to have an audience aligning with your target market. If they are less than famous, they will probably accept a more modest payment, or perhaps you can offer them free product or services for their endorsement. This brings influencer marketing into reach for any business that can find the right influencer for their market and budget.
Want some help with influencer marketing? Drop us a line.